levelgrind: (Default)
no zombie is safe from chicago kyrie. ([personal profile] levelgrind) wrote1999-12-23 01:41 pm
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Making DW Look Like LJ

How to Make Dreamwidth Look Super Cool and LJ-Like

Dreamwidth is an awesome site filling a huge role after the recent Livejournal Commentstyle Apocalypse, and while it's got plenty of the features we all want, the site scheme isn't entirely pleasing to the eye. Luckily, with a little help from some Greasemonkey scripts and the Firefox Add-on known as Stylish, your DW browsing experience can look as funky-fresh as the one pictured above. :D

Unfortunately, I only know how to do this for Firefox, but if anyone with any Chrome know-how has got this on lock, yet, I'll update the post with the info.

- Install Greasemonkey, if you don't have it already. Greasemonkey is an add-on for Firefox that enables you to use Userscripts to enhance your browsing experience. There's tons of stuff you can do with Greasemonkey, and I really can't recommend it enough, even if you end up deciding not to change the look of DW.

- Second, install Stylish! This add-on installs themes and skins for sites, including, but not limited to, journaling sites like Livejournal, Dreamwidth and Insanejournal. It should appear as a little box in the corner of your browser, and clicking on it will enable you to edit your styles.

- Install the Dreamwidth Site Scheme Detector extension for Greasemonkey.

- Install Tropospherical Blue for Dreamdwidth. It changes the pages to blue and white. In order for this to work, you must have your site scheme set to Tropospherical Purple. Please make sure to switch to that! You can do that by going here (this is also where you can switch off custom comment pages)!

-Install Dreamwidth for Widescreen! This will make the comments spread across the page rather than staying cooped up in the center like they are on the vanilla site. Particularly good for those of us who preferred Livejournal's spread-out look. Fix Page Width seems to do basically the same thing. I haven't seen any difference between the two, but they're both worth installing to see if there's any difference so you can pick and choose which one you prefer to use. Alternately-alternately, if you have a superwide screen, [personal profile] mattybee created this CSS that should help you out. Just create a new user style by clicking on Stylish in the corner, copypasting that, naming it, and saving it.

That should work, and it should make DW look as close to LJ as possible without... Actually being LJ, so you get the best of both worlds.

There are plenty more tweaks, too, found here. The custom skins are neat but can be pretty distracting, and most of us seem to prefer the calming, boring and sterile blue. But hey, it's worth looking, anyway.

And that should be it! There are probably plenty of other things to be tweaked, but, this will get you the basic LJ look. If there are any problems, let me know, and I'll try to help out as much as possible. I'm not really an expert on this, but, I'll do my best. o7

Other Fun Stuff
If you're like me you also prefer the customizable layouts from Livejournal. Well, while they aren't available on Dreamwidth, you can use LJ layouts using Dreamwidth's Layers feature. You can find a tutorial on how to do that here! It's fairly simple and makes it so that you can use Flexible Squares, Smooth Sailing, Nebula and Mixit layouts from LJ.

This post details a lot changes between LJ and DW, should you want any idea on what's missing over here.

Something else to be aware of is that tables don't work here the way they did on LJ. I haven't been able to transfer any of my fancy schmancy permissions posts over here just yet, but I'm looking into why that is and why we can work around it (because I am a big fan of pretentious coding and I'm sure other people are interested, okok). Apparently background colors will bork your code, and you will need to add line-breaks to the code in order for them to not be jumbled up. You can still use background colors for individual cells, but the cells will run together rather than having a space of separation.

Use this to get background colors on separate cells: td style="background-color: rgb(0,0,0);"

The good news is that tables work fine on custom comment pages, but on the vanilla page, they will break. If you can live with custom comment pages, then, you can have background colors and images on your tables. If not, I suggest sticking to a default background until we hopefully get some change to this.